Just after college, I worked in a coffee shop that so generously let us bring home baked goods at the end of the night. And I lived for the gingerbread at the holidays. Even long after I stopped working there, I returned every Christmas because it was my favorite holiday treat (500 calories and all, I bet)! While living in Korea, I remember googling how to make this gingerbread because I missed it so much, but every recipe listed molasses as a key ingredient. Molasses was yet another item I couldn’t find in my little town of Mokpo. So I gave up. Little did I know that a simple boiled syrup of dates and water makes a really good substitute. It creates a very similar rich sweetness and only a slightly lighter color as the end result.
Given that I like to find alternatives for practically everything nowadays, I even threw in some chia eggs, coconut cream frosting, and a bit of coconut flour. And ya know what? I ended up devouring this one just like I remember from the good old days (pats self on back). Enjoy, and may your kitchen smell as warm and Christmasy as ours!
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup coconut flour (or sub 1/2 cup extra wheat flour)
1/2 cup organic cane sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbsp groung ginger
Whisk all ingredients together to remove lumps.
I batch date syrup made with 10 dates*
2 chia eggs (click here for quick tutorial)
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1 cup hot water (not quite boiling)
*To make date syrup, remove the pits of 10 dates and place into a small saucepan. Cover with 1 cup water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Continue to boil for 15 minutes, until date skins are completely soft. Remove from heat and cool for a few minutes. Pour entire mixture into a blender, water and all, and blend until a smooth, pudding-like texture forms. For a super smooth syrup, strain with a nut milk bag. For reference, I prefer to keep all the fiber in this recipe and do not strain it.
Blend all wet ingredients until a uniform mixture has formed. Gently whisk wet ingredients into dry ingredients and pour into a bread pan. Bake at 350F for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool before topping with frosting.
Coconut Cream Frosting:
1 14-oz can coconut cream, refrigerated overnight
1-2 Tbsp maple syrup (sweetness to taste)
Scoop out the solid part of the cold coconut cream, reserving the liquid for use as you like in other recipes. To the solid cream only, add maple syrup to taste. Blend thoroughly and refrigerate until ready to use.
*I do not mention this in the video, but if you like cream cheese frosting on your gingerbread, 3 oz. of cream cheese added to this recipe will give it a much tangier flavor and add a stiffness to the frosting. Your choice!